Loosely defined, organized crime groups, also known as gangs are where criminal activities are conducted by individuals together who operate nationally or internationally for the sole purpose of gaining power, money, influence, and commercial gains. All their operations are conducted in illegal, corrupt, and / or violent manners. The most dangerous gangs in the world vary from hierarchy networks, cells, and some even evolve to other structures. Some of the crimes committed possess certain characteristics such as:
– They tend to have an economic gain as their main goal. By participating in illegal activities and investing in legitimate businesses
– They tend to exploit differences between city zones to further their agendas such as expanding their power or becoming wealthier
– They tend to try and gain influences in law enforcement, politics and government through corruption
– They commit violence, which is likely to intimidate people into doing what they want. These can be either actual or implicit threats
Top 10 Most Dangerous Gangs in the World
10. The Yakuza
Located in Japan, Yakuza has been known to use meat cleavers, guns and fire as their proffered murder weapons. These organized crimes are typically based in Asia but have been known to export drugs across the globe. Established back in 1949 after the Chinese civil war, this organized crime has over 39,000 members. Simply put: have you ever seen those Italian-American gangs on television and in movies that operate on a large scale and retaliate and murder to keep fear and disruption? That is exactly how the Yakuza operate. Some of their illegal activities include money laundering, loan sharking, robbery, extortion, kidnapping, and so much more.
9. The Mungiki
Located in Kenya, Mungiki is a Kikuyu tribe organization that was primarily founded to protect the Kikuyu’s from the other tribes. This gang was known to behead and kill anyone who stood in the way of the Kikuyu tribe thriving. Their preferred weapons of choice are machetes, spears, poison and clubs. Mungiki loosely translated means “Multitude” which is fitting as they are said to be in multitudes of a few million members. No one is certain of their numbers as they operate in secrecy. They have terrorized non kikuyu tribes with political affiliations, murder, controlling public transportation, kidnapping, and violent extortion.
8. Primeiro Comando da Capital (PCC)
Located in Brazil, PCC can be found throughout the San Paolo prison system as well as in numerous slums across Brazil. This organization is well known for extortion, kidnapping and violent extortion. In May 2006, PCC put an entire city of Sao Paolo under siege for nearly a week as they terrorized, brutally killed police officers and burnt government buildings. This gang is said to have around 6000 dues paying members as well as 14,000 prison inmates.
7. United Bamboo (Zhu Lien Bang)
Located in Taiwan, United Bamboo is also referred to as Zhu Lien Bang. They are known to use guns, gun, and more guns as their preferred murder weapon. United Bamboo deal in human trafficking, drugs as well as gun trafficking. This organization once murdered a journalist while he was in his own garage. They have successfully set up a collaborative relationship with other high profile gangs around the world. This helps United Bamboo to keep their operations running in the illegal back market network. They consist of around 10,000 ethnic Chinese gang members and their associates.
6. Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13)
Located in El Salvador, Mara Salvatrucha is more famously known as MS-13. This is a transnational criminal organization that was founded in Los Angeles, California back in the 1980s by immigrant El Salvadorians. Their murder weapons include machete and rocket-propelled grenade launchers. This gang is heavily involved in human, drug and weapons trafficking, prostitution, extortion and murder. MS-13 are not afraid to put a hit on federal agents and are said to have an estimate 70,000 members with roughly 10,000 operating from the United States. MS-13 has partnership with Los Zetas – this means that some MS-13 members undergo specialized military training.
5. Solntsevskaya Bratva
Also known as Solntsevskaya Brotherhood, this criminal organization is said to control hundreds of legitimate businesses throughout Russian and beyond. There is not much known about this group but they are said to be involved in human trafficking, stock fraud, money laundering, online scams, hacking, blackmailing, extortion, prostitution, credit card fraud, and so many other illegal mafia activities.
Camorra operates primarily in Italy and are believed to have approximately 111 Camorra clans, with a total of over 6,700 members. Camorra is said to be one of the most influential factions of the Italian mafia. In addition to their criminal activities, they are said to control a large number of legitimate businesses throughout Italy. Camorra are said to extort and terrify local businesses while still being involved in all sorts of criminal activities. The price of local businesses not paying is often violent extortion, arson or death. They also have strong holds with local politicians as well as law enforcement.
3. Hell’s Angels
With an extensive international reach, Hell’s angels are a biker gang that is known for its unforgivable ruthlessness. Hell’s Angels are one of the most known criminal organization in the United States and Canada. Their headquarters are based in North America with influences in 27 other countries. This organization reserves the notion to engage in illegal activities with the objective of turning a profit. They believe that violence and operating under no law are an inherit part of living life and money made from these activities should be used on that lifestyle.
2. Sinaloa Cartel
Located in Mexico, Sinaloa Cartel is one of the most active drug cartels in the entire world. Their CEO, known as El Chapo (Joaquin Guzman Loera) is public enemy number one. Forbes has even named him as the most powerful person in the world. Although Guzman Loera is currently in prison, this has not stopped Sinaloa Cartel from its dealings of kidnapping for ransom, extortion, smuggling, human trafficking, prostitution, and murder. Reports have said that this cartel was allowed to smuggle billions of dollars worth of drugs into United States in exchange for information on other cartels. Its main rivals are Los Zetas.
1. Los Zetas
Also located in Mexico, Los Zetas are said to have been original members of an elite force in the Mexican army. One day they decided to venture off on their own and become gang lords. Founded in 1990’s when the skilled Mexican army went rogue, they are the most violent and most feared criminal gangs in the world. They are said to be the most technologically advanced, sophisticated and dangerous cartel to ever operate in Mexico. Los Zetas deals in assassinations, kidnapping, extortion, drug trade and oil. They are the most feared and ruthless criminal organization. In 2011, Los Zetas set fire to a casino in Monterrey, Nuevo Leon in Mexico, killing 52 innocent people. The reason for this is still unknown. All in all, this group is our number one most feared organization as they are not only violent but they have army skills and weapons to get the job done and no one can stand in the way.
Transnational Crimes and their influences
There are many different types of crime organizations. These sorts of organizations can vary from international drug trafficking, street gangs, counterfeit goods, kidnapping, cyber-attacks, trading in stolen art, human trafficking, human slavery, goods smuggling, exotic animals’ trade, and many other illegal activities.
Since the modern world is more technologically advanced, criminals no longer operate from a specific location; they are now able to operate from just any corner of the world.
To exert control, gangs use threats and violence. This in turn leads to less security of the public. When threats of violence are used for coercion in neighborhoods or towards people, it is near impossible for law enforcements to carry out their jobs efficiently. Such violence tends to destabilize tourist rates and when not handled and dealt with on time, these organizations can expand their power to operate globally.
Because their main objective is to get money and power, such organizations willingly sell merchandize such as guns and other weapons to foreign countries for a pay day. There have been countless of cases where individuals or organizations have sold high tech weapons confiscated from the American soil to other countries. A good example is the case of Viktor Bout, an international arms trafficker who was conspiring to sell millions of dollars worth of weapons to the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, which is a well known foreign terrorist organization.
Such organizations are involved in money laundering schemes that affect the world as a whole. International organized criminals’ also hold major positions in the material markets. This on its own is enough to disrupt the normal workings of these markets. A good example is that of Semion Mogilevich who was charged in 2003 in Eastern District of Pennsylvania for his involvement in securities fraud and money laundering. He is said to hold large portions of the natural gas industry in the former Soviet Union. Researchers have concluded that his involvement in this area plays a significant role in global energy markets.
Because these organizations do not make their money legally, they tend to look for other alternatives to move and invest their money. This is where international financial system is involved. In order to move their money, such organizations form incorporated shell companies or use corrupt banking institutions. Studies have shown that billions of dollars of illicit funds are transferred through America’s financial system annually. This practice has a major effect on the States financial stability. This in turn affects all intermediaries globally. Since the United States has become increasingly resilient in catching anyone involved in shell company schemes, many criminal have now opted to open offshore bank accounts in countries where security is less rigid. Such offenses are causing countries to have conflicts thus putting a strain on their international relations.
In order to operate, gangs have to corrupt a public official. They do so by either promising financial gain or through violence. Once they have a public official both at home and abroad, they then carry out their operations since these corrupt officials will hide and protect all illegal operations. All around the world, most public official corruption can be traced back to an illegal organization. Some criminals are smart enough to corrupt officials from foreign countries so that they can increase their influences in that particular country.
When fake money and other sort of fraud are involved, it becomes an international relations nightmare. Such organizations use fraud and other mischievous methods to steal from national and international investors, government agencies, and consumers. Ever since we ventured into the digital era, securities markets have become a prime target for criminals. Services such as the internet and wire transfer services have helped gangs manipulate not only local individuals but they can easily cross to international boarders and steal in a matter of seconds. There are countless fraud schemes nowadays and many have fallen prey to such criminal offenses. Many have fallen prey to the Nigerian scams and Canadian scams.
This has affected the number of Nigerians viable for visa to the United States. This is just one example; there are many other schemes that have left some individuals bankrupt. Our list comprises of top 10 most dangerous gangs in the world. They are ruthless, tough, and show no mercy. There are other gangs across the globe but these 10 have the hugest track record and have caused so much chaos and hurt to thousands and thousands of families across the globe with no mercy or second thoughts.